Generator or Inverter for residential use?

netstrider

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Cape Town. I've been mulling over a range of ideas:

- a smallish setup that will cover a couple of lights, the router, fibre, PC (or flatscreen and PS4),
- spending a bit more on higher quality equipment with room to upgrade in future if need be
- a full on solar install

The problem is it also depends on your outlook of the future of SA. If one thinks that we are going to end up like Zimbabwe or Nigeria where they have extended blackouts, then options 2 and 3 are the way to go.

If one expects a couple of years of intermittent load shedding, then its the first option.
Consider something like this for now - https://www.sustainable.co.za/axpert-mks-3-24-3kva-3000w-24v-hybrid-inverter.html

Which is a 24V inverter, so you can get away with 2x 12V Lead Acid batteries for now, and add solar later if needed or change out the batteries for Lithium.

It's small enough to save you about 6-8K on the inverter alone, will save you a bit on initial battery outlay (don't need 48V) and it's big enough to power fridge / freezer along with all your lights, TVs, routers etc. if necessary and it's pure sine wave.

If in 5 years when your batteries die and you have a better idea of the shortcomings (if any) you can resell the inverter and upgrade to a 5kVA or larger and also upgrade your batteries.

IF Eskom performs a miracle and comes right, you didn't put R100k into a system you hardly need. If Eskom does not improve - you will still have a pretty decent inverter and possibly even solar by then.
 

MEIOT

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Consider something like this for now - https://www.sustainable.co.za/axpert-mks-3-24-3kva-3000w-24v-hybrid-inverter.html

Which is a 24V inverter, so you can get away with 2x 12V Lead Acid batteries for now, and add solar later if needed or change out the batteries for Lithium.

It's small enough to save you about 6-8K on the inverter alone, will save you a bit on initial battery outlay (don't need 48V) and it's big enough to power fridge / freezer along with all your lights, TVs, routers etc. if necessary and it's pure sine wave.

If in 5 years when your batteries die and you have a better idea of the shortcomings (if any) you can resell the inverter and upgrade to a 5kVA or larger and also upgrade your batteries.
Does it blend do you perhaps know?
 

netstrider

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For the record, I would not wire up the fride / freezer permanently to the inverter as a failover, but have the option wired (maybe a separate plug in the wall, clearly marked), in case you do need it.

The inverter is perfectly capable of handling that load, but it will drastically shorten your uptime with the batteries unless you get a sizeable beefy battery bank.
 

Neuk_

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Jan 23, 2018
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Cape Town. I've been mulling over a range of ideas:

- a smallish setup that will cover a couple of lights, the router, fibre, PC (or flatscreen and PS4),
- spending a bit more on higher quality equipment with room to upgrade in future if need be
- a full on solar install

The problem is it also depends on your outlook of the future of SA. If one thinks that we are going to end up like Zimbabwe or Nigeria where they have extended blackouts, then options 2 and 3 are the way to go.

If one expects a couple of years of intermittent load shedding, then its the first option.
You should also factor in the cost of electricity going forward, especially since Eskom won it's recent court case against NERSA and is on track to increase electricity cost by 55% in the next three years. We went for the second option as it lessens the effect of load shedding but gives us room to go largely off grid if we need to due to Eskom's inability to supply electricity or want to to reduce electricity cost as Eskom increases start hitting.
 

Geoff.D

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Came across a very neat installation today in a Doctor's waiting room.

3kVA-24VDC - Schubart Inverter/ Charger/Solar Charger.

Looks like a rebranded Mecer/Axpert?

Batteries have no labels on them - could not ID them.

Only bad part is the DC CB is not installed in a box, just inline and crammed behind the batteries and the wall.

Will post pics as soon as I can get them into Dropbox.

Does anyone know these inverters?

20200316_141701.jpg

20200316_141730.jpg

20200316_141836.jpg
 
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Geoff.D

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Don't know, no labels on them at all. The receptionist did not know, asked. just 2 x 12V black boxes with handles on them.
 

Steamy Tom

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Jan 23, 2019
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Voltronic inverter.

Those are agm deep cycle batteries, probably 200AH -240AH based on the size. Kak install in the open like that imo, I don't even see battery fusing
 

Geoff.D

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Voltronic inverter.

Those are agm deep cycle batteries, probably 200AH -240AH based on the size. Kak install in the open like that imo, I don't even see battery fusing
The Installation was done in accordance with the building owner's requirements, right at the DB. Yes, that is the part that was bad if you read my post properly. The DC CBs are inline with the battery cables, crammed behind the batteries between the batteries and the walls. There was, according to the receptionist, plenty of resistance from the building owner to allowing it in the first place.
Neat install except for the DC fusing aspect.
 

Splinter

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Came across a very neat installation today in a Doctor's waiting room.

3kVA-24VDC - Schubart Inverter/ Charger/Solar Charger.

Looks like a rebranded Mecer/Axpert?

Batteries have no labels on them - could not ID them.

Only bad part is the DC CB is not installed in a box, just inline and crammed behind the batteries and the wall.

Will post pics as soon as I can get them into Dropbox.

Does anyone know these inverters?

View attachment 801669

View attachment 801673

View attachment 801675
This installation was exposed to patients in waiting? Wouldn't that be dangerous?
 

Geoff.D

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Joined
Aug 4, 2005
Messages
14,702
Yes I agree with those sentiments as well. In a doctors waiting room, with the batteries exposed, anyone can fiddle with or drop things on the exposed battery terminals. But as pointed out before, the building owner dictated where and how. Still, seven a small table over those batteries would be better than nothing.
 

Assasin_Zer0

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Jun 28, 2010
Messages
390
Did you ever order anything from Proton?
Just curious, Google reviews don't seem too bad but always nice to get first hand feedback...
Hi Sorry for only getting back to you , things have been a bit hectic at work regarding the COVID thing .

No not ordered yet , I did however go visit their shop , call me paranoid but i wanted to make sure it wasn't some fly by night place. They do keep some items in stock at the store itself , and the day i was there some oak picked up quite a large order .

They also do installations depending on area of course .
 
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